What beautiful fragrance? How to use it?
September 9, 2012 2:04 PM   Subscribe

I bought bottles of orange blossom water and rose water at the grocery store. What can I do with them?

Looking for all uses, including and beyond food.
posted by lizbunny to Home & Garden (36 answers total) 51 users marked this as a favorite
Make orgeat!
posted by The Dutchman at 2:10 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

I've made simple syrup with rose water and used it to flavor tea and lemonade. I also used the rose syrup mixed with plain yogurt and fresh mint and made Popsicles. A little rose goes a long way. Next time I think I will soak a plain-ish cake with the rose syrup to serve with tea.
posted by Swisstine at 2:10 PM on September 9, 2012

If you are a baker: add either to frosting until the frosting starts to taste flowery!

If you like to drink cocktails: add either to an orange-juice based cocktail until it tastes flowery!
posted by munyeca at 2:11 PM on September 9, 2012

Rose water facial spritz for hot days or dry environments (i.e. on planes).
posted by holgate at 2:12 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

With the rose water, make baklava (I usually make Alton Brown's recipe, and people never stop asking for it after trying it once – but do invest in a spray bottle for the melted ghee, it'll make your life easier).

With the orange blossom water, make orange scented cannoli – just add the scented water and orange zest to the ricotta filling and roll the ends of the filled cannoli in extra-dark mini chocolate chips. Amazing!
posted by halogen at 2:13 PM on September 9, 2012 [5 favorites]

You could make persian tea by adding a cardamom pod and a light splash of rose water to a cup of hot tea.

Or try this iced version.
posted by bunderful at 2:14 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

I bought both of those for flavoring the buttercream filling in macarons. Doesn't that sound adorable, rose flavored pink ones, and maybe yellow or pale peach for the orange blossom ones?

(I have yet to do it, because macarons turn out to be finicky little suckers, but that's what I bought them for :/ )
posted by fingersandtoes at 2:20 PM on September 9, 2012

I put rose water in my iron, it makes things smell great, especially my sheets.
posted by Nickel Pickle at 2:34 PM on September 9, 2012 [7 favorites]

Make a Ramos Gin Fizz.
posted by DoubleLune at 2:38 PM on September 9, 2012 [8 favorites]

Rosewater is an amazing toner. After you've washed your face, dab or smooth it on with a cotton pad. Makes you smell nice, too!
posted by artemisia at 2:51 PM on September 9, 2012


From my archives:
A cupcake-inspired cocktail
Feu de Vie cocktail blog
posted by knile at 2:53 PM on September 9, 2012

posted by availablelight at 2:54 PM on September 9, 2012

This Omani eggplant in date sauce dish is delicious, and while you can make it without rosewater, it's on the ingredient list. from the same cookbook (World Food Cafe: Global Vegetarian Cooking, by Chris and Carolyn Caldicott), rosewater rice.
posted by nevers at 3:07 PM on September 9, 2012

Make kulfi i.e. Indian style ice cream! The link is to a recipe for Saffron and Rosewater Kulfi.
posted by peacheater at 3:13 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Rose-water flavored lassi is very popular in Indian cuisine. If you're not crazy about rose water, like me, it adds another dimension of flavor to other lassi. Lassis?


Plain yogurt
Frozen strawberries
Not enough rose water that everything tastes like soap

Blend. Drink.
posted by Juliet Banana at 3:15 PM on September 9, 2012

On the off chance that you're woo-enabled, use a knife to poke holes in the cap of the rose water, and use it to sprinkle your altars/yourself for a heart-focused alternative to smudge.
posted by ottereroticist at 3:16 PM on September 9, 2012 [3 favorites]

Make a Juliet & Romeo cocktail.

Juliet & Romeo
by Toby Maloney, The Violet Hour

3 slices cucumber
Pinch of salt
1 sprig mint, 1 leaf reserved for garnish
2 ounces Plymouth gin
3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
3/4 ounce simple syrup
3 drops rose water, for garnish
3 drops Angostura bitters, for garnish

Put cucumber slices and salt in a glass or a tin, and muddle. Add mint sprig, gin, lime juice, simple syrup, and ice, and shake. Strain into a coupe without ice. Garnish with a mint leaf and the drops of bitters and rose water.
posted by kathryn at 3:44 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Rose ice cream is amazing. Raspberry goes well with the rose.
posted by brina at 3:57 PM on September 9, 2012

Orange blossom water is awesome in glazes for pound cake, esp. cardamom pound cake. Ditto for rose water. Rose water is especially tasty in conjunction with pistachio pound cake.
posted by skye.dancer at 4:12 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oh, I should have mentioned, in the alcoholic beverage category, both are tasty additions to white or red sangrias. Orange blossom is especially good with rum drinks or tequila/margaritas (as a substitute for Grand Marnier or Liquer 43). Never tried a rose water (vodka) martini, but I'm guessing it could be tasty, too!
posted by skye.dancer at 4:15 PM on September 9, 2012

This is so simple I feel silly saying it, but...fill an eye dropper with it, and when you drink a glass of water (regular old water), put a few drops in. Takes five seconds, and yum.
posted by molybdenum at 4:19 PM on September 9, 2012

It sounds like it would be weird, but a few drops of orange blossom water in a cup of coffee gives it a nice extra aromatic push.

Also, vanilla ice cream.
posted by kagredon at 4:37 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Some of the best basmati rice I've eaten had a taste of rose water. And saffron, of course.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 4:49 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

I often put a few splashes of rosewater in my fruit jellies and jams when I'm canning. Divine in apple jelly and berry jams.
posted by bluebelle at 5:05 PM on September 9, 2012

Turkish delight.
posted by bilabial at 5:17 PM on September 9, 2012

Via the site that peacheater linked to: Watermelon, Rosewater and Mint Popsicles sounds heavenly.
posted by marsha56 at 5:52 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

This classic Moroccan dessert (orange slices with orange blossom water, sugar and cinnamon) is great after a heavy meal. It's also a good everyday treat because it seems luxurious but is quick and cheap.

If you get bored after a long floral water kick, just slosh it into your baths, or dilute it and use it as light fragrance.
posted by pickingupsticks at 6:06 PM on September 9, 2012

Rosewater is amazing!

I like to make sauce for ice cream/waffles/etc that consists of a few handfuls of red berries, a splash of rosewater, and some sugar to taste.

A little is nice added to milk (hot or cold, regular or strawberry; homemade strawberry milk is basically the above recipe with milk added, and is stupendous), water or certain herbal teas (think hibiscus and other fruity/floral teas), and I also like it in cocoa.

You can add a dash to almost anything that seems to go well with the fragrance; pastries, pies, tarts, jam, breads, cakes, batter, fruit salad, pink lemonade, gelatin, salad dressing, white fish, poultry... go wild!

You coud make turkish delight but be advised that it will probably not be successful the first time you try.

Almost anything that has almonds tastes good with rosewater.

And it makes awesome facial toner!
posted by windykites at 8:14 PM on September 9, 2012

The proper recipe for Spanish Roscón de Reyes requires agua de azahar, that is, orange blossom water. So, if you still have some left by January 5th, you can bake it. It's actually eaten on the morning of the 6th, while opening the presents the Three Wise Men brought you.

Or just anytime, but preferably in winter. It's usually served with whipped cream on the side, and eaten while drinking thick chocolate, Vienna style.
posted by kandinski at 8:51 PM on September 9, 2012

Gulab jamun an indian sweet.
posted by Under the Sea at 9:38 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

I love making these spectacular cookies - Aphrodite Cakes with their rosewater frosting!
posted by 168 at 9:52 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

Well done, everyone! Best answers to all!
posted by lizbunny at 11:46 AM on September 10, 2012

My mom just added a bit of rose water to her daily cup of tea, along with a splash of milk. Had it every morning.

Now I want rose water. And there's an Arabian grocery by where I work. Hrm...
posted by spinifex23 at 1:48 PM on September 10, 2012

Seed a pomegranate. Sprinkle rose water. You're welcome.
posted by preparat at 3:18 PM on September 10, 2012

Make kulfi i.e. Indian style ice cream! The link is to a recipe for Saffron and Rosewater Kulfi.

Along the same lines, I made saffron and rose waffles the other day. Topped with fresh strawberries. Just heat the milk for your waffle recipe with saffron, let steep as long as overnight. Add a teeny amount of rosewater before you bake the waffles.
posted by oneirodynia at 4:48 PM on September 10, 2012

Dilute the orange blossom with alcohol and spray to have a mosquito repellent. Lasts about one hour inside a room. It really works, specially at night.
posted by omegar at 4:14 PM on September 15, 2012

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